Anna Bretschneider at the head of Baillie Gifford in Switzerland

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The Scottish asset manager continues to expand into Europe and establishes itself in Zurich.

Scottish asset manager Baillie Gifford opens an office in Zurich to provide local services to Swiss institutional and wholesale customers. Anna Bretschneider has been appointed to the management of the subsidiary. After Dublin and Frankfurt, the Zurich office is the third European site opened in three years. With its differentiated investment solutions managed according to a truly active strategy focused on the long term, Baillie Gifford offers Swiss investors an alternative to the many investment vehicles backed by a benchmark or passively managed. Its portfolios are significantly different from the benchmark and contain around 90% of Active Shares.

Baillie Gifford has remained calm during the current crisis, as the asset manager focuses on performance over five years or more, not on quarterly sales or profits. Many companies in its portfolio have nevertheless shown themselves to be very resilient and provide essential services in these troubled times thanks to investments in technology, solid balance sheets and economic models that preserve capital. Some of them, such as Netflix, Spotify, Peleton, Teledoc, Amazon, Zoom, Delivery Hero or Tencent are experiencing rapid growth and an increase in the number of users.

Since its founding in 1908, asset manager Baillie Gifford has followed a long-term investment philosophy, focusing on listed and privately held companies that exploit new technologies breaking with established industries. These companies are often characterized by innovative business models, entrepreneurial leadership and a positive corporate culture with an emphasis on people. They have the potential to be among the long-term winners and to experience exceptional growth over decades.

Anna Bretschneider, Director for Switzerland: “Baillie Gifford invested in Tesla in 2013, even before the company had completed the development of the first electric car. We are still Tesla’s largest external shareholder and did not sell our position when the stock came under pressure in 2019, or indeed in February 2020, when the stock price shot up. This vividly illustrates Baillie Gifford’s unique and more contemporary investment philosophy than ever. This unusually distant investment horizon, favored by the partnership ownership structure of Baillie Gifford, convinced me. An asset manager who counts the main European pension funds as one of his clients is also a partner of choice for pension funds and Swiss Wholesale clients. “

Scottish asset manager Baillie Gifford is organized as an independent partnership. It has enjoyed a strong presence on the British market for years and recently also in the United States and Asia. Over the past three years, it has gradually strengthened its presence in Europe: in 2019, offices were opened in Dublin, Ireland, then in Frankfurt in Germany. And today the Zurich office.

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